Fruitbats and Screwballs had its second clothesline launch at Sugar Hut, Liverpool on 23rd March 2017.
Deborah Wilkinson, 50, is the designer behind all the madness, creating ethical clothing to capture the imagination.
The launch party for Fruitbats and Screwballs was filled with other independent business owners like Debbie, who came to the sample sale to network. After enjoying arrival prosecco, the women sat down for a three course meal to discuss the new range. Originally from Leeds, Debbie designs unique women’s clothing and was even placed in Liverpool Echo’s top 10 best catwalk moments from Liverpool Fashion Week 2016.
The poncho that was put in top 10 wasn’t even supposed to go in the box.Debbie, who didn’t think it was a strong design, said: “I was a poncho short and had to send the model out in that poncho.
“I’ve learnt a lot about the industry. It’s basically about second-guessing what people like.
“What I think is my best piece, somebody will disagree and vice versa.”
Not only has Fruitbats and Screwballs been noticed in Liverpool, but the clothing line has a huge American following and one admirer being Diana Wang, daughter of famous wedding dress designer, Vera Wang. After LFW2016, she was even scouted to take part in New York Fashion Week in September 2017 and admits she thought this was a prank at first until the scout told her how amazing and unique her designs were.
Debbie – who has always been into fashion, dressing quirky and having umpteen hair colours – was taught by her grandmother, May, how to sew and crochet from a young age.
She said: “My earliest and most fond memory is being about five years old sitting on her knee on an industrial sewing machine.
“She taught me everything from pattern cutting to having the ability to look at a piece of clothing and work that item out and then transfer it into something.”
Magazines have surprisingly turned down the opportunity to feature Fruitbats and Screwballs due to Debbie’s age. The majority of fashion magazines have a strict rule on designers being under 36. Debbie said: “I want to be more of an inspirational coach for older women put off coming into the industry late. I kind of sneaked in from the left, and nobody saw me coming.”Debbie, who hopes the future consists of adding shoes to the mix, said: “A lot of people are scared to use colour and show individuality.
“I want to stay ethical and I am going to be big.
“It’s just a matter of how and when.”